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G


eorge Davis was conflicted when Fayette County Schools in Fayetteville, Georgia, gave him the opportunity to develop a building plan that would put the district’s transportation


offices and maintenance shop under one roof. Here was an opportunity, within financial boundaries, for the bus shop supervisor and fleet manager to build his “dream garage” for servicing 259 school buses. But he was also wary of placing administrative offices in close proximity to a maintenance operation. “I was concerned that the noise and fumes and ev- erything that goes on in a shop would interfere with the transportation operation offices,” Davis recalled. “Before, the maintenance shop and operation offices were across the parking lot from each other, but we were told to put it all under one roof.” That was 2013. Davis began gathering opinions on


what the capabilities of the maintenance shop should be, what technologies to include, what design to use and how much spacing was needed. He and his staff of eight technicians and an assistant supervisor consid- ered everything from the distance the offices would be from the maintenance shop, to bay size. They even considered what color the walls should be painted, to eliminate shadows from LED lighting. The result was not a just a bus garage, but a 34,320-square-foot transportation facility that opened in May 2016. That shop, alone, is 23,760 square feet and is supplemented by over 10,500 square feet of office space. Davis said the marriage of office and shop space is


working out just fine. “We have our shop area, which is 16 bays, and we have a huge cinderblock firewall from the floor to the ceiling that separates the offices from the shop,” Davis said. “The first spaces you see are the parts room, bathrooms, white fleet bays, vans and driv- er’s ed cars. So, you basically have about 50 feet before you get to the first bus bay. That has helped.” The command center area is equipped with three


large flat screens with television and computer connections, plus a generator backup. Davis said this allows technicians to view local news, routing, weather and GPS coordinates in real time. A bus exhaust system allows them to run engines


while the doors are closed in winter. In addition, a 10- foot roof overhang enables technicians to pull a bus out of the rain to perform light maintenance. Other features include a 10-foot wide aisle down the


George Davis overlooking Fayette County’s facility.


center of the shop, so equipment can be transported without restrictions. As a result, the shop area of the facility has the flexibility to change with the times. As word spread, counterparts in other districts


40 School Transportation News • FEBRUARY 2019


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